1971 Challenger R/T Arizona Matching number car assembly

 

I’ve been working intermittently over the past two years without posting any updates, so here are another group of pictures.  In the last posting I had installed the front suspension and rear axle housing, axles, differential, brakes and fuel system.  Now all of that has been rechecked and re-torqued to ensure that nothing was missed.  I assembled the instrument cluster with a N.O.S. clock because I really wanted the tic-tock second hand movement like original instead of the sweeping second hand with the aftermarket or restored units being offered.

I installed the wiring, A/C and dash. The dash is was prepped and painted with the special suede paint that isn’t available anymore, but I found some old stock and had it mixed to perfection.  The original engine and transmission were completely rebuilt with the engine receiving new pistons, a three angle valve job, Mopar adjustable hydraulic rockers and purple camshaft.  I’m a purist, but it a mild grind just a little more aggressive than stock and ground using modern fuel and exhaust overlap and duration.  The Holley shop rebuilt the original Holley 4-bbl carb the engine looks totally sweet hemi orange against the B5 brite blue metallic paint.

This is a matching number engine and transmission and most importantly all original sheet metal IMG_1921 (1280x960)car from Arizona that has a “Show Car” designation on the factory build sheet.  So, the body was stripped and then hand prepped on every surface before “Show Car Quality” sealer was applied to the seams.  Then the car was sealed and primed and the body painted in the High Impact paint.  Instead of leaving the bottom in primer the bottom side also has a show car finish.

This car was built to be driven and look perfect for years to come so every part was painted or coated in the original factory color to match the factory assembly except it’s now protected from the elements.  My goal is to have a new 1971 Challenger R/T except this one won’t rust or corrode.

Take a look at the new pictures.  I’ll take more as the transmission and driveshaft are now in the car and I’m finishing the engine compartment details.

Engine in and transmission about to go in

Engine in and transmission about to go in

Matching Numbers Car

Matching Numbers Car

Factory Spot Welds are perfect

Factory Spot Welds are perfect

Rallye Gauges came on all R/T Challengers

Rallye Gauges came on all R/T Challengers

383 Magnum factory Hemi Orange

383 Magnum factory Hemi Orange

Rear Axle view

Rear Axle view

Basically an improved new car

Basically an improved new car

Now the interior is going together.  The carpet is cut to match the original carpet that I saved.  This allowed me to form it exactly like it came from the factory when the car was new.

Carpet installed

Carpet installed

The engine was installed and now all the lines and fitting are being completed.  Notice the level of detail as every part has been reconditioned and plated just like when the car was new.

Engine Accessories installed to factory specifications

Engine Accessories installed to factory specifications

The body is together and all the seem line up perfectly.  Now it ready for final paint.  But, before that happens the rest of the interior will go in.  The car is further along than in the photos.  So I need to catch up and post again.

Body assembled and panel gaps all even

Body assembled and panel gaps all even

1958 Chevrolet Apache 3100 NAPCO 4×4

Well I’ve been sidetracked on the Challenger project for about a year!  I’ve been waiting for the brake booster to come back form the rebuild shop.  Well actually I’ve been waiting for the guy I paid 15 years ago to send it off for rebuild as promised.  No names mentioned as you know who you are!!!  He swears it’s in the mail and I’ll have it this week, but I’ve heard that before.

If you’ve ever done a complete restoration project you’ll know what I mean.  You have to depend on other people to do their jobs.  Otherwise the whole project gets stalled.

So, in the meantime I bought a 1958 NAPCO Apache 4×4.  These are extremely rare trucks and this one was the 67th truck built in Oakland, CA 1958.  I was just going to do a quick buff, get running and rewire and one year later it’s a full blown nut and bolt ground up restoration.  I’ve rebuilt the original 235 Stovebolt motor, SM420 4-speed transmission and front aIMG_2540 IMG_1563nd rear 3.90:1 geared axles.  This truck is going to be perfect.  I’ll post pictures later this weekend.

Well, I’m back posting the progress on the truck.  It’s been a long hard job and the truck is really looking great.  I’ve been to many car shows and this has to be the nicest truck I’ve seen anywhere.  Everything has been gone through and the body has been reworked so all the panels fit like a new car.  They were never built this good from the factory, but the lines are so nice on this truck that it called out to be done right.  It should be complete in a bout a week.  Here are some pictures from a coupe of weeks ago.

Body is together.  Base coat clear coat paint with plenty of deep shine clear.  All metal and straight as an arrow.

Body is together. Base coat clear coat paint with plenty of deep shine clear. All metal and straight as an arrow.

New bed wood and chrome.  This truck is the perfect combination of pint and chrome.  And check out those tires riding on the original 6 lug 16″ 3-clip rims.

New bed wood and the inside of the box is laser straight too!

New bed wood and the inside of the box is laser straight too!

Here’s a 3/4 shot.  Big back window is about to go in.  This truck is 1958 Apache 3100 big window, deluxe heat, deluxe trim, radio and NAPCO 4-wheel-drive.  Sweet!

This truck is awesome!

This truck is awesome!